Onteora addresses bomb threat

After going nearly 20 years without a bomb threat, Woodstock received two in the space of eight days.

Onteora Middle/High School was put on lockdown Thursday morning, September 22 after officials received a bomb threat. After a building search, authorities gave an “all clear” and students returned and resumed normal activities. Thursday’s after-school activities, including open house, were expected to continue as scheduled.

When the threat was received, according to a release from the district, law enforcement was immediately contacted, the building was evacuated, and parents/guardians were alerted to the situation via Shoutpoint, the District’s electronic notification system. Law enforcement authorities from the New York State Troopers, Ulster County Sheriff’s Department, the Towns of Olive and Shandaken Police, and the New York City Department of Environmental Protection conducted a thorough search of the premises and determined that no credible threat existed.


As of a result of the investigation, a 14-year-old Onteora school district student was charged with the class E felony of falsely reporting an incident in the second degree. The student was released to parents and referred to Ulster County Family Court.

Onteora also sought to remind its students and community of the value of “see something, say something.” Anyone with information is urged to contact the school administration, the police, or a trusted adult with details.

It turned out to be an eventful day for new Onteora Central School District superintendent Bruce Watson, who thanked law enforcement personnel for “their prompt response and ongoing commitment to the safety and security of our students…We understand that false threats such as this are frightening and disruptive. We will continue to work with law enforcement to ensure the safety and security of our students and staff and to identify the person or persons responsible for this particular incident. I would also to thank the High School and Middle School administration for their good judgment and leadership in the handling of the evacuation as well as the cooperation we received from the staff and students.”

The threat came on the heels of a Sept. 15 threat that cleared the Woodstock Golf Club.